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The Quad Core Xeon W5580 processor delivers impressive performance -- up to 4 times that of earlier generation single-core processors. Each of the cores has an L1 and L2 cache, and an additional 8MB of shared L3 cache; this lets the Xeon W5580 handle heavy loads and large data sets. The 64bit cores are designed to handle all of today’s x86 32bit software with ease, and can effortlessly migrate to 64bit software.
You also get Intel Virtualization Technology hardware enhancements that support software-based virtualization. It works with VMware, Virtual PC and XenSource, as well as virtualization products from an increasing number of software vendors. Virtualization Technology combined with the processor’s great power efficiency lets you run virtual environments on blade systems with fewer cooling challenges. The end result is maximum power and service per square foot of server space.
Pros: Blindingly fast
Cons: A bit expensive, especially for two
Other Thoughts: These Xeons are very, very fast -- probably just under twice as fast as the previous generation Xeons at the same clock speed
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“Blindingly fast”— mike 9/22/2009